Monday 21 May 2012

Under the Andalucian Sky

The family decided to go to Spain for the week. This naturally entitled us to the same privilege and thus began our tour of South Western Europe. We were all so proud of Jude taking her first international flight, although I couldn't help but feel a slight pang of jealousy as she managed to get her British passport weathered with a Spanish immigration stamp at barely three months old!

Nonna and Jude - Casares del Sol
Blue and White - Casares, Costa Del Sol
Malaga was a beautifully sunny 25 degrees celcius as we picked up our seven seater people mover from the hire carpark. Ben practised driving on the right side of the road while going along 130 kilometre per hour Spanish highways, as Layla calmly navigated to the holiday apartment in Casares; Shilo and I tried to convince our youngest passenger that the fluorescent tangerine hired carseat was not all that bad. It was supposed to be a quick Carrefour supermarket stop for supplies, but as soon as we entered our jaws just dropped. Rows upon rows of whole jamon legs were strung alongside dried sausages of all sizes, shapes and colours, luring us across the aisles to the charcuterie section where we were blown away by the crazy amount of choice. In Australia thin slices of this beautiful dried ham would be an expensive gourmet pleasure; here this was just the normal stuff from standard deli. Spain had just elevated the standard of our ham palates to the next level.

Warm Reception. Timber Balconies and a Blue Sky - Ronda, Malaga Province
At the holiday apartment, another sun-soaked balcony offered deep azure sky views over terracotta terrace houses to the horizon of the Mediterranean Sea. Some days we'd wake up late, swim in the pool or laze by it (in my case, try to even out a bad t-shirt, shorts and sandals tan developed over four months in Southeast Asia), sip crisp glasses of vino rioja blanco (or bottles of San Miguel), and pig out on hastily selected but oh-so-tasty platters of chorizo, morcilla, goat's or manchego sheep's cheese, pickles, olives, garden salads and fresh crusty breads.

Our tasty platter of chorizo, morcilla, goat's or manchego sheep's cheese, pickles, olives, garden salads and fresh crusty breads. - Casares

Castle Ruins on the Beach - Sabinillas, Costa Del Sol
Other days we'd stroll down to nearby beachside village of Sabinillas, savouring sangrias (and more San Miguels), paella and tapas, before browsing the Sunday market for trinkets. Hours would be spent chatting and general people watching.

Dinner at Sabinillas - Costa Del Sol
Spanish Men Playing Cards - Sabinillas, Costa Del Sol
Spanish life was good.

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